By Bill Sheets Herald Writer
Two familiar faces could be headed back to the Lynnwood City Council.
Former longtime Councilman Jim Smith and former Councilwoman Ruth Ross were leading Tuesday in their bids to return to the council.
Newcomer Ian Cotton was a close second in Smith’s race, only 18 votes behind, and appeared likely to accompany Smith to the general election.
Smith had 1,001 votes, or just over 34 percent; Cotton, 983 votes, just under 34 percent. Shirley Sutton, chairwoman of the city’s Diversity Commission, had 927, or 32 percent.
Smith served on the council for 24 years until he was upended by Van AuBuchon two years ago. Cotton works as an electrical engineer. The seat was left open when Councilman Mark Smith gave it up to run for mayor.
Ross served on the council for eight years until she was defeated in 2009 by Kerri Lonergan-Dreke, who served one term and did not file this year for re-election.
Newcomer Douglas Lovitt, a real-estate broker, ran second to Ross on Tuesday and had the inside track to advance along with her to the general election.
Ross had 925 votes, or 32 percent; Lovitt, 823 or 28 percent; planning commissioner Maria Ambalada, 601 or 21 percent; and Dave Mayers, a quality specialist for Boeing, 506 or 17 percent.
In the third race, Councilman M. Christopher Boyer appeared headed to the general election along with Michael Moore. Boyer, pastor of Good Shepherd Baptist Church in Lynnwood, had 1,265 votes or 44 percent; Moore, making his second bid for office, had 1,139 votes, 40 percent; and James Robert Deal had 438, or 15 percent.
Boyer was appointed to the council to fill a vacancy last year.
Jan Schuette and Mike Hopson appear ready to face off in the general election for the Arlington City Council seat now held by Ken Klein, who is running for Snohomish County Council.
Schuette, 68, came in first with 869 votes or about 47 percent. Hopson, 65, garnered 535 votes or about 29 percent. The candidate Klein endorsed in the primary, Scott Keith, came in third with a return of 428 votes or about 23 percent of the vote.
Hopson, a retired teacher, is a familiar face at City Council meetings and serves on the city’s Airport Commission. Schuette, a retired principal at Stanwood High School, is known to many people in the city for her work as chairwoman of the Arlington Relay for Life to benefit the American Cancer Society.
Appointed Councilman Lynn Sordel appeared to be on his way to facing Sean Kelly in November for Position 1 on the Mill Creek City Council. They were even on Tuesday with 911 votes apiece — a little over 41 percent of the 2,210 votes counted. A third candidate, Herbie Martin, trailed with 329 votes, about 15 percent of the total.
Sordel, 62, a seven-year resident of Mill Creek, is director of parks and recreation for the city of Lynnwood. Kelly, 46, did not return phone calls or emails from the Herald to discuss his candidacy for an earlier story.
For Position 2, longtime incumbent Donna Michelson faced her first opponent in a dozen years. On Tuesday, Michelson had a commanding 57 percent of the 2,256 ballots tallied. Opponent Jason Wingert, whose support topped 32 percent, was on his way to facing her in November.
A third candidate, Douglas Carlson, trailed with just over 7 percent support.
Michelson, 64, was appointed to the City Council in 1999 to finish the term of John Lovick following his election to the Legislature. Lovick is now Snohomish County executive.
In 2001, Michelson captured 73 percent of the vote to earn a full term. She ran unopposed in 2005 and 2009.
Wingert, 45, is a financial adviser and owner of the Wingert Insurance Agency. He is seeking elected office for the first time.
Herald reporters Gale Fiege and Noah Haglund contributed to this story.